Agnieszka Pilat in Conversation

With Ewan McEoin

Agnieszka Pilat in Conversation

For NGV Triennial, Polish born, USA-based artist Agnieszka Pilat has presented a new work that continues her examination of technology’s influence on contemporary society and considers questions around AI robots as species needing care.

Pilat’s Triennial project Heterobota tests our threshold for machines to exist outside of servitude and develop their own creative pursuits. In the exhibit, audiences are invited into the home of three quadruped robots – Basia, Omuzana and Bunny – to observe and interact with them as they go about their daily routines. Playing, resting and painting in their studio, the robots make their own artworks and their behaviours and creative capacity seemingly echoes our own. The project asks us to consider whether a future race of sentient robots could look back at these paintings as the ‘neolithic artefacts’ of their distant forebears?

As the exhibition comes to a close, Pilat joins us in Melbourne to reflect on this ground-breaking artwork – a catalyst for discussions on the ethics and cultural significance of robotics and artificial intelligence.

About the speakers:

Agnieszka Pilat lives and works in New York City and in San Francisco and as a self-proclaimed machine chaser, she commutes between the east and west coasts in pursuit of emergent technologies. Pilat’s work has been featured in publications, including WIRED, Artnet, New York Magazine, and The Times of London. Pilat is currently a guest artist at Agility Robotics and at SpaceX.

Ewan McEoin is Senior Curator of Contemporary Art, Design and Architecture at the National Gallery of Victoria.

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